E.A. Sports Today

Fits like Glover

Longtime assistant under Lewis, Odam at Piedmont promoted to take over boys’ basketball program, will continue as assistant in football under Miller

Cover photo: Piedmont’s Matt Glover (center) talks during a timeout at the Northeast Regional in February. He has been promoted to head coach. (Photo by Greg Warren)

By Joe Medley
East Alabama Sports Today

PIEDMONT — Matt Glover waited his turn and learned behind Tommy Lewis and Jonathan Odam and was the natural choice to take over Piedmont High School’s boys’ basketball program.

The Piedmont Board of Education voted to approve Glover’s promotion from assistant coach to succeed Odam, who stepped back from coaching basketball to follow son Alex’s college playing career at Jacksonville State University.

Glover will also continue as an assistant football coach under new Piedmont head coach Jonathan Miller. Glover was an assistant under Steve Smith for 17 years, coaching inside linebackers and special teams, and was named Alabama Class 3A assistant of the year in 2022.

“We look forward to Coach Glover taking the helm of our boys’ basketball program and continuing our tradition of success,” Piedmont principal Dr. Adam Clemons said.

Glover, 43, coached under Lewis for 12 years and Odam for five at Piedmont.

“I think Coach Lewis might have the most wins ever for a Piedmont basketball coach, and I think Coach Odam has the highest winning percentage ever for a Piedmont basketball coach,” Glover said. “I know there are going to be expectations, but the great thing about it is, I got to coach with those two for the past 17 years.

“I got to learn. I think I’m going to be able to take a little from both of them and try to make my style.”

While Piedmont lost Alex Odam, the Class 3A player of the year, to graduation, the Bulldogs will return standouts Rollie Pinto and Ishmael Bethel from a team that reached the Northeast Regional final.

The Bulldogs return three starters.

Like Jonathan Odam had with Alex, Glover has a son coming up the ranks. Nick Glover is a seventh-grader.

Glover said he doesn’t anticipate much change. Piedmont will likely continue to play a fast-paced style.
“At the same time, have a good relationship with the kids and try to get them to buy into the system,” Glover said. “It’s not broken, so we’re going to try to just keep things rolling.”

Glover said he’s learned different things from his mentors over the years. He called Lewis a “genius” when it came to evaluating players and getting the most out of them.

“He knew different strategies on how to get the most out of each player,” Glover said. “He really wasn’t as much concerned with the Xs and Os as how to get the most out of each player.”

Glover said Odam was more of an Xs and Os guy and “really good at developing players.”

Glover said he has a “fantastic” relationship with Miller, who was hired to replace Smith as head football and athletics director and Smith took those same jobs at Westbrook Christian.

Miller also coached boys’ basketball at Saks.

“I might rely on him for advice just because he’s got head basketball experience,” Glover said. “His style of play is a little bit different, so I might lean on him a little bit

“I’ve still got Coach Odam there, who’s a head coach, and I’ve got Coach Miller, who’s a head basketball coach, and I’ve got Coach (Matt) Deerman there, who’s coached the girls, so I’ve got knowledge there that I can go lean on.”

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